who are the favorites of the 2021 edition?

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They are 30 but in the end, there will be only one left. The list of the 30 nominated for the final victory at the Ballon d’Or 2021 is now known since this Friday. After having made the deadlock in 2020 due to a year marked by the Covid-19 pandemic, this prestigious award is back this year. Foot Mercato offers you a top 10 of the favorites who could claim to lift this prestigious trophy, with a Lionel Messi announced as the main contender for his own succession.

Lionel Messi (34, Barcelona / PSG – Argentina)

If the criteria for awarding the Ballon d’Or differ and tear the web, Lionel Messi remains the main favorite to succeed him for this 2021 edition. La Pulga has finally won a trophy (the Copa América) with the Argentine selection , one of the main reasons why the native of Rosario has been criticized so much for years, while being decisive (4 goals, 5 assists). The No. 30 of the Rouge et Bleu, who left FC Barcelona to join PSG during the last summer transfer window, has so far scored 37 goals and delivered 14 assists in 2021 in all competitions, also gleaning a Cup of the King with Barça.

Cristiano Ronaldo (36, Juventus / Manchester United – Portugal)

It’s hard not to mention the name of Cristiano Ronaldo when talking about the favorites at the Ballon d’Or. If he was not very far with the Seleção during Euro 2020 (round of 16), the Portuguese international finished top scorer in the competition. He also inscribed his name a little more in history by becoming the best artificer in the history of the Euro, ahead of Michel Platini. A little later, CR7 also became the top scorer in national history (111 goals). The Lusitanian, transferred from Juventus to Manchester United last summer, has therefore chained the records in recent months, also stacking goals (34 in 47 games). His Italian Cup won with the Vecchia Signora would go almost unnoticed …

Robert Lewandowski (33, Bayern Munich – Poland)

Robert Lewandowski is considered by some to be the best No. 9 right now. And for good reason: the Bayern Munich striker is a real goal machine, as evidenced by his 41 pawns planted in the Bundesliga during the 2020-2021 season, which allowed him to dethrone a certain Gerd Müller as record holder for achievements in the history of the championship over one season. Could the Poland captain be taken a little more seriously if he plays for a major squad? The captain of Poland, who did not pass the hens at Euro 2020, remains in any case on a very solid year (48 goals in 39 games) with a new German league title added to his record.

Karim Benzema (33, Real Madrid – France)

Karim Benzema has never hidden his dreams of winning the Ballon d’Or, where he finished 26th in 2019. This year, he should not be far from first place as he continues to impress every weekend with Real Madrid. Back in selection for Euro 2020 with the Blues, KB9 did not disappoint and since then he has been present on the front of the attack of the France team. The former OL scorer has found the net 33 times in all competitions in 47 games since the start of the calendar year, bringing him a little closer to one of his biggest dreams.

Jorginho (29, Chelsea – Italy)

If the attackers have de facto more chances to win this individual reward as the offensive aspect is put forward, we must not forget the shadow workers. Jorginho is one and his major influence in midfield with Chelsea and Italy is far from foreign to the European league titles won by the Blues and Squadra Azzurra last summer. The one who also lifted the European Supercup last August has played 47 games in total this year, scoring 4 goals and delivering 1 assist while showing consistency. He has also won the UEFA player award for the 2020/2021 season.

Gianluigi Donnarumma (22, AC Milan / PSG – Italy)

Sacred best player of Euro 2020 with Italy, reigning European champion, the new goalkeeper of PSG did not steal this honorary title. If it seems complicated for Gianluigi Donnarumma to win the Ballon d’Or, as the goalkeepers are historically rewarded, it seems difficult not to name him among the 10 favorites because he has shone in recent months. And this with AC Milan as well as Squadra Azzurra and now with the capital club, where he is already making a strong impression. There is no doubt that the native of Castellammare di Stabia (47 games this year, 16 clean sheets) will point his nose more than once in the 30 nominated for the Ballon d’Or in the future.

N’Golo Kanté (30 years old, Chelsea – France)

Many are those to campaign for N’Golo Kanté to win the Ballon d’Or. If these people praise the human qualities of the Frenchman, it is above all because the Chelsea midfielder has done a remarkable and impressive job with disconcerting consistency for many seasons now. NG, annoyed by the Covid-19 and some physical glitches, still played 37 matches in all competitions this year. With the key a Champions League and a European Supercup with the Blues, where his duet with Jorginho gave many nightmares to his opponents.

Kylian Mbappé (22 years old, PSG – France)

Observers and players of the round ball do not sketch the slightest doubt and are unanimous on this subject: Kylian Mbappé will one day be crowned Ballon d’Or in his career. However, it should not be for this year. The Bondynois failed to win Ligue 1 last year with PSG, and only lifted the Coupe de France. With the Blues, if it was far from being catastrophic during Euro 2020, his missed penalty eliminating France in the round of 16 marked the spirits. His undeniable qualities and his ability to make a difference in any case bring him closer to the first places, just like his 34 goals in 51 games this year.

Ruben Dias (24, Manchester City – Portugal)

If his teammate Kevin De Bruyne could also have legitimately been in this top 10, Ruben Dias (54 games, 1 goal in 2021) also impresses with his performance behind the field. The Portuguese international has taken on a new dimension under Pep Guardiola and played a central role in reclaiming the title of Premier of England from Manchester City in 2020-2021. The former Benfica player, recruited at a gold price by the Cityzens (€ 68 million), has also added a League Cup to his record. On an individual level, he won the title of best player of the year in the Premier League. His solidity, calm and consistency have already propelled him among the best central defenders in the world of football.

Erling Haaland (21, Borussia Dortmund – Norway)

Finally, we could not miss the machine that is Erling Braut Haaland, whose statistics continue to panic the football world (43 goals in 41 games in all competitions). The serenity and confidence emanating from this 21-year-old young man are just as impressive as the power he exudes and his composure in front of the opposing cages. Much like Kylian Mbappé, many predict a bright future for him and the Norwegian, who won the German Cup this year with Borussia Dortmund, is expected to be one of the Frenchman’s main contenders in the conquest of the Ballon d’Or at the ‘to come up.

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